Saudi Arabia and SoftBank sign US$200bn MoU for solar project

Saudi PrinceThe proposed solar project is part of Saudi Arabia's plan to grown renewable energy production. (Image source: James N. Mattis/Flickr)Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman and SoftBank Group Corp’s chairman and CEO Masayoshi Son on Tuesday signed a memorandum of undertaking to build a US$200bn solar power project

The agreement furthers the crown prince’s efforts to wean the country off oil revenue, boost renewable energy production, diversify revenue streams, cut spending and privatise government services as part of a broad slate of reforms.

According to Bloomberg, at 200GW, the planned project would be about 100 times larger than the next biggest proposed development.

“It’s a huge step in human history. It’s bold, risky and we hope we succeed doing that,” Prince Mohammed said, according to the report.

Son said he expects the project to create as many as 100,000 jobs and reduce US$40bn in power costs, according to Bloomberg.

“The kingdom has great sunshine, great size of available land and great engineers, great labour, but most importantly, the best and greatest vision,” Son told reporters at a briefing.

According to reports, SoftBank is said to invest up to US$25bn in the country.

It will reportedly invest as much as US$15bn in the Neom project, a plan to construct a city on the Red Sea coast and US$10bn in Saudi Electricity Company.

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